IL: Tech Manufacturer MBX Systems Moves to Libertyville, Quadruples Size | Trade and Industry Development

IL: Tech Manufacturer MBX Systems Moves to Libertyville, Quadruples Size

Jun 20, 2012

MBX Systems, a 100-employee technology manufacturer based in Wauconda, is relocating to Libertyville in a move that will quadruple its physical space, allow an eightfold expansion of its manufacturing floor, and accommodate a 25 percent growth in its workforce in 2012 alone. MBX manufactures custom-built server appliances for software vendors in more than 40 industries who deliver their applications pre-loaded on hardware systems for optimized performance and ease of deployment in business data centers.

The company plans to invest $2 million in remodeling and equipping its new 84,000-square-foot headquarters at 1900 Winchester, previously occupied by Motorola and now renamed 1200 Technology Way, before taking occupancy. It has signed a seven-year lease with Barrington-based K & R Enterprises 1, Inc., the property owner. The site is located just south of the Libertyville Township Soccer Complex along Route 45.

A key factor in MBX's selection of the Libertyville location was its eligibility for the Illinois EDGE (Economic Development for a Growing Economy) program, which provides a tax credit to qualifying companies that locate or expand operations in Illinois in lieu of moving to another state. In return for the tax credit, companies with 100 or fewer employees must invest at least $1 million in the buildout, create at least five new full-time jobs in Illinois, and maintain all new and retained jobs to continue to qualify for the tax reduction.

MBX has already added 12 new employees in 2012 and plans to hire at least 12 additional manufacturing and business development staff this year. At current growth rates, including projections by industry analysts that the demand for security appliances alone will increase by 18 percent annually over the next four years, the company expects continued expansion with a possible workforce of 200 by 2017.

"We strongly considered a new site in Wisconsin, but the Libertyville building gives us a more desirable location for recruitment purposes, higher power density that will allow us to build more systems simultaneously, enough space for a 'innovation room' where we can experiment with new manufacturing methods, and ample room to grow," said MBX Systems CEO Tom Crowley. "All of these benefits, along with the EDGE credits, convinced us to stay in Illinois."

MBX moved to its existing facility in Wauconda in 2005 and expanded the building to 19,000 square feet in 2009. The company quickly outgrew the larger space, more than doubling revenues in 2010 despite the recession and continuing to log strong growth since then.

First-quarter 2012 performance included a 60 percent increase in sales to existing customers and a 226 percent rise in revenues from new customers. These gains have been fueled by entry into new vertical markets as well as manufacturing and quality control capabilities that led to MBX's selection as the 2012 Quality Plant of the Year by Quality Magazine.

"More technology companies like MBX are choosing Illinois over other states because we have proven time and again that we have the tools a company needs to succeed and expand," said Illinois Governor Pat Quinn. "We work with companies from large corporations to tech startups on a daily basis and have the best workforce in the world, and we're pleased that MBX has selected Illinois to grow their operations."

About MBX Systems
Founded in 1995, MBX Systems is a leader in the configuration, manufacturing and deployment of server appliances and optimized systems for application developers and service providers. MBX combines turnkey hardware programs with value-added services delivered through a dedicated account team, including platform configuration, hardware branding, inventory management, global logistics, product support, and system warranties. For more information, visit or call 800-560-1195.

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